The total number of subscribers to
Electronic Arts has ploughed a reported $200 million USD into development of the game, a figure which may not even include marketing costs. With that kind of initial investment, a loss of 400,000 users over the course of just over a month (and only a few months after launch) represents a dangerous sign for the MMO.
However, way back in February 2011 EA’s CEO John Riccitiello that the title would need only 500,000 subscribers to be profitable and that “anything north of one million subscribers is a very profitable business”. During todays financial call, Riccitiello claimed that Star Wars: The Old Republic was “not in [EA’s] top 5” list of ‘franchise properties’.
If the game’s subscriber base levels off around the one million mark, it may yet be a moderate success for EA. If numbers continue to fall (or are propped up by users on special offers or free trial months), it could spell serious problems for the game.